The Bible is not the story of God. The Scriptures do tell us everything we know for sure about God. However, the primary story line in the Bible is the story of humanity. The very first chapter in Genesis informs us that God created a wonderful home for the creatures that He made. He placed the man and the woman at the pinnacle of creation and gave everything to us. We were commanded to “fill the Earth” with our progeny and “subdue it.” When our first parents rebelled, and sinned against God, sin and death entered the world. The whole human race was separated from relationship with God and came under the condemnation of the Almighty. The story of the Bible then follows God’s redemptive efforts to reconcile mankind to Himself through Jesus Christ. Each of our stories has a place in the Kingdom of God. We all have a story of grace, repentance, faith, pardon, and eternal life. Or, we have a story of pride, rebellion, condemnation and eternal punishment.
What we can know with certainty about the Apostle Paul is in the New Testament. Volumes have been written about him. But beyond what is related about Paul in the Bible about his conversion and ministry, we have few details about his life, family, appearance or personality. Was he ever married? I don’t think it is likely that Paul had been single before he met Jesus on the Damascus Rd. Did his wife and family, with their generational Pharisaical tradition, reject him? Paul’s absolute silence on these things is fertile ground for a novelist.
I wanted to write an exciting and inspirational story about just a small portion of the Apostle’s life. The story came from the first seventeen verses of the eighteenth chapter in the book of Acts. How did he meet Aquila and Priscilla? What is their story? By what circumstance was Paul able to establish himself next door to the Synagogue? Who was Titius Justus? How was Paul able to affect the conversion of the leader of the synagogue, Crispus? How did it happen that Sosthenes became the leader of the synagogue just a short time later? Why did they “all” beat Sosthenes before the judgment seat of Gallio?
Everyone has a story. In the Grip of God tells the story of these people without damaging the character of the Apostle or contradicting the Bible. It does not pretend to be Scripture or a precise description of first century Corinth. It does tell the story of Paul bringing the gospel of Jesus Christ to Corinth with power.